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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm sorry if this post is all over the place and awkward. I'm really distraught right now; My rat had a lump on her neck. Brought her to the vet and she found out it's a tumor, after suspecting it was an abscess. She cut the area open a bit to get a better look and she said it's a tumor. She's pretty sure it's not a mammary tumor, considering it's pretty far up her neck. She also went on a small rant about since she's almost a year old, she's already half way through her life cycle already. She was trying to comfort me, but it really didn't help.

Anyways, she didn't take a biopsy and said our best bet would be to go in for surgery. She doesn't know if it's cancerous or not, and would try to remove it. She doesn't know if she'll be able to remove it, because it's a delicate area. Lots of vital things, and she doesn't know if it's attached to anything. She also doesn't know if it will grow back.

Any ideas on what this could be? I'm really looking for some peace of mind because I'm a mess. Patches is the same as usual. Very energetic, eating fine and playful. I came here because I figured people here have a lot of experience with rats. Plus, after looking it up I saw the vet had a not-so-great reputation on Yelp and Google Reviews.

Again, sorry if this post is all over the place or awkward. I'm just really scared right now.
 

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I can see why she has a bad reputation! Wrong wrong wrong about her thinking of her as an old rat. It would be like saying a 30 year old himan is nearly dead. rats can make 3, and although most only make it a bit past two, one is still considered prime of life. And she should NOt have cut it open to get a better look unless u mean just a biopsy. Best piece of advice I can give is see a different vet pronto. Sorry if I sound over harsh. I know it's not your fault and you're a very good owner to actually get her to the vet. Bets thing would be surgery if at all possible, but from a skilled vet.
 

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While I do agree with having it removed ASAP, that's about it. That vet sounds very rude and like they don't even enjoy seeing rats (considering the talk about her being 'old'). Also, there are mammary glands up around the neck, so it very well may be a mammary tumor. This shows mammary gland location on rats...



Unfortunately, mammary tumors are extremely common in intact female rats. If they're spayed, it greatly reduces (or eliminates) the possibility for mammary tumors, pyometra, and reproductive organ cancers. I have all of my girls spayed. As for it being cancerous, whether it is or not is kind of a moot point, since it should be removed either way (it will definitely keep growing regardless) and if it is cancerous, there isn't a treatment for that in rats. I don't opt for biopsies, since it doesn't really change the outcome of anything.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I can see why she has a bad reputation! Wrong wrong wrong about her thinking of her as an old rat. It would be like saying a 30 year old himan is nearly dead. rats can make 3, and although most only make it a bit past two, one is still considered prime of life. And she should NOt have cut it open to get a better look unless u mean just a biopsy. Best piece of advice I can give is see a different vet pronto. Sorry if I sound over harsh. I know it's not your fault and you're a very good owner to actually get her to the vet. Bets thing would be surgery if at all possible, but from a skilled vet.
No, it was not a biopsy. And at first, she literally just said "Let's find out right now if it's an abscess", took a needle, and poked my baby's lump on her neck. Never have I heard such a sad sound from any animal. It broke my heart, as well as my mother's. She then said she had to sedate her, so she did, poked it again with a needle, and then made a bigger hole with a scalpel only to tell us it was a tumor. And no, you don't sound harsh at all. You're giving me the facts I asked for. And yeah, we found another vet. Hopefully he's better. :/
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)
No, it was not a biopsy. And at first, she literally just said "Let's find out right now if it's an abscess", took a needle, and poked my baby's lump on her neck. Never have I heard such a sad sound from any animal. It broke my heart, as well as my mother's. She then said she had to sedate her, so she did, poked it again with a needle, and then made a bigger hole with a scalpel only to tell us it was a tumor. And no, you don't sound harsh at all. You're giving me the facts I asked for. And yeah, we found another vet. Hopefully he's better. :/
Oh wow, there is mammary tissue in the area it's in... The vet said it was too high up to be mammary but... It seems not. The lump seems to move a bit, like it doesn't feel like it's attached to anything. It doesn't hurt her, and doesn't seem to cause any discomfort. If anything, the two stitches are bothering her most.
 

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The fact that it's movable is a very good sign, easily removed. most mammary tumors are benign, and although no surgery is without risk, this is about as safe as surgery gets. That sounds terrible the way she did that! a vet should be able to tell if it's a tumor or absess without doing that. Glad to hear you found another vet. surgery is definately the best option, and with a skilled vet it will be no problem.
 
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